Ms 32, 1889

Ms 32, 1889

Sermon/Sermon at Kansas Camp Meeting

Ottawa, Kansas

May 10, 1889

This manuscript is published in entirety in Topeka Daily Capital 05/11/1889.

[Sermon by Mrs. E. G. White, May 10, 1889, 2:30 p.m., transcribed from the Topeka Daily Capital of May 11, 1889].

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For everyone that asketh receiveth and he that seeketh findeth, and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, whom, if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? or, if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? Therefore, all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them, for this is the law and the prophets.” Matthew 7:7-12. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 1

We have a promise from God, and I wish everyone before me would believe it. “Whatsoever is not of faith is sin” [Romans 14:23], and if we come asking without faith, if God should bless us we would not recognize or appreciate it. We need a living, active faith, and entire dependence upon God as though we were little children, and then our requests will be granted. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 2

“But,” says one, “I don’t feel as I want to feel. I want to feel this way.” This is well enough, and we do frequently have it, but you must not make feeling the criterion of faith, or you will lose many precious blessings. Feeling is not faith. I have sometimes myself felt this way and tried to make terms with God, if He would do so and so, I would do so and so. But, is feeling the emotional part, or is it the oracles of God that testify to us that we are the children of God? 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 3

If we show unlimited faith in God it will lift us up out of difficulties and perplexities. God has said it, and His Word is immutable. Come to Him believing He will do just as He says He will. We have it promised that good gifts will be given by our Father if we ask Him. Should we not present our cases then more frequently than we do and believe He will help us because He knows our helplessness and our want of righteousness and that He must come in and fill up the lack? 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 4

I want you to know what it is to have a living faith in God. Never can we know the depth of mire from which we have been lifted, only as we comprehend by living faith the length of the cord that was let down from heaven to draw us up—the living chain of mercy He has let down that we must, by faith, cast our whole weight upon. Then we can indeed be cured by the blood of Jesus Christ, and His righteousness become our righteousness. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 5

What brought Him to earth to lay aside His royal robes, His crown of glory, His position as one with the Father, clothe His divinity with humanity, and come here to carry on the battle with the powers of darkness in our behalf? Why did He not leave us to do it? Because we had fallen, and divine power had to be added to our finite nature to make it successful, to give us any hope of everlasting life. An angel coming could not do the work. How could they understand the work to be done? Christ became a man to sympathize with men. So man, at every step, is overcoming where He did, Christ’s work being to show that divinity combined with man would overcome. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 6

When Christ came into the world, what a work had been going on! Satan had had his own way and man’s mind had been clouded so that the precious gems of truth were buried. Christ’s first work in the ministry was to gather up these precious gems and rid them of the superstition and tradition that covered them and restore them just as they had been given to the prophets and presented so little children can understand them. This is the work our Saviour came to do and also to represent the Father. Satan had been misrepresenting Him, His work and His spirit. So then He is a God of goodness, love and compassion. Satan shows Him as a God of justice, visiting the transgressions of the sinner without mercy. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 7

When Moses prayed that the Lord might go before him, the Lord said: “I will make all My goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee, and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.” [Exodus 33:19.] And in (Exodus 34:5), God proclaims His own character. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 8

After the Fall all communication between men and God came through Christ, so we have this presented before us in straight, pure lines that if man will confess his sins, the Father will pardon him. Notwithstanding all this, how few take the lessons home to themselves. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 9

Now what are we to do? Why, represent Christ here upon the earth, the only way He will be represented. We can go to God for the things we need. Christ has said, “Enter into the strait gate,” also, “Beware of false prophets.” “Ye shall know them by their fruits.” [Matthew 7:13, 15, 16.] What a man professes is no evidence that he is a child of God, but what he does. Does he manifest a proper spirit? Does he reveal Christ in His home life? 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 10

Christ revealed the Father. When Philip asked to see the Father, Christ said: “Have I been so long with you and yet hast thou not known Me, Philip? He that hath seen Me, hath seen the Father.” [John 14:8, 9.] Our work is now to teach men how to enter the strait gate, to tell men what they should do to be saved. We want to know what fruit is borne. Christ says: “I sanctify Myself that they may be sanctified.” [John 17:19.] Have you a home religion? Do you speak kind, true words? Do you make home a place to plead with God and to teach your children to come to Him? That He bought them? Do you teach them constantly, the claim high heaven has upon them? If so, then the precious Saviour will save them. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 11

“If I be lifted up I will draw all men to me.” [John 12:32.] Present before your children that Christ is drawing them and that they are drawing away from Him. Christ is calling them to repentance, not their repenting. No one can repent unaided. Christ calls you. How? Did He not erect His cross between heaven and earth? Whenever God the Father and the heavenly train look upon it, all bow to it and the angels prostrate themselves before it. Why? Because the plan of salvation has been carried out and the Father accepts it. Midway the cross is erected and sinners are to look upon it and be saved. It is this that brings sinners to repentance. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 12

Men may talk of an eternally burning hell, but that does not do the work. It is the love of God. No one can repent except Christ move him. How is it done? Is it a special act for each? It is the Christ of Calvary hanging midway between heaven and earth, and then what? “Mercy and truth have met together; righteousness and truth have kissed each other.” [Psalm 85:10.] I plead with God to show me this so clearly that I may present to others who have so much difficulty to comprehend that Christ is first and last, the Alpha and Omega, and has drawn man, by a love as broad as the world, to Him, and what then? It leads man to repentance and then comes the forgiveness. We want that the brethren and sisters should take hold of this for themselves. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 13

When Peter had been put in prison the priests said, “Do not preach in His name,” but the angel opened the prison door and bade him go forth and preach. This was a conflict between the two, and Peter, when rearrested said: “We ought to obey God rather than man.” [Acts 4:17, 18; 5:19, 20, 29.] The love of God which is beyond comprehension is constantly drawing men to repentance. It is Christ that is the first and the last, the Author and Finisher of our faith. Now our faith must grasp this truth. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 14

Man’s nature is enmity against God. Christ came clothed with humanity and then humanity touched humanity, and by living faith men grasp Christ and repent that they have transgressed the law of God. As they repent He forgives their transgressions. So it is Christ from first to last. Now we want our brethren to see this. What is man to do? Have faith. What kind of faith? To believe that Christ is the propitiation for our sins, and that He brought immortality to light. But what are we to do? Why, this faith is a working faith. Will a farmer fail to sow seed yet expect a harvest? No more will you unless you are active workers in the cause of God and put to the stretch every muscle, every energy. “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with My Father in His throne.” [Revelation 3:21.] What does that mean? He overcame in our behalf and we are to overcome in His strength. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 15

Every evil and defect will shut us out of heaven if we do not overcome through the strength He has given us. Why then groan, “O, I wish I was a child of God?” If an angel told you, would it make it any stronger? You lack faith. Put your faith to the utmost stretch. If I promise you something, you would not require an evidence from me. It would be insulting to ask it. Yet we treat God in that way. He says if you ask you shall receive. Now what are you going to do? Ask for what you want. Claim His promise. Tell Him you are weak and cannot overcome unless you have His strength, and that you must have it. Do you suppose you would ask in vain; knock and not be heard? No. If you would have this faith you must be the happiest people on earth. Why? Because you have planted your hopes on these promises, and you go on your way rejoicing, knowing He will do exactly as He promises. This faith works by love, and our old, hard hearts fall upon Christ and are broken, and He fills us and molds us by His Spirit. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 16

The trouble with us is that we have never fallen upon the Rock. We are wrapped up in our own self-righteousness. Had we not better believe and mix the truth with faith, having that faith which works by love? Shall we not, in all our connection with each other see Christ in all, and love one another as Christ loves us? Let us take Christ as our precious Saviour, and He will be to us a present help in every time of trouble. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 17

I am so glad we need not go through life with our heads bowed down looking at our own imperfections. We misrepresent Christ in this way. Have we not everything to be grateful for? Christ has gone to prepare mansions for us. Let not your heart be troubled. Is not that enough to make us glad? Should we not go our way rejoicing, talking of His compassion, His love? Have you, brother or sister, put your mind on the right side of the question? Turn over a page and look over the shadow of darkness to the love of Jesus Christ. “Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given.” [Isaiah 9:6.] God has given us all that mightiness and power. Will we believe He will strengthen us and overcome for us as He overcame? 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 18

It is the humanity combined with divinity that will bring us through the strait gate. Don’t dishonor Him any longer by your unbelief. Let us lay right hold of His promises. Open your heart to Him and let self break all to pieces. He will gather you. He will put His mold upon you. The Lord is coming. There is no time for indolence. There is a message to go to the world. We cannot present it to the world if we do not believe in Him. We are receiving precious things. 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 19

Brethren, will you take hold of this truth; will you, by work in your family, seek to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and carry this spirit into your churches, so educating yourself that you can preach Christ to them that know Him not? 6LtMs, Ms 32, 1889, par. 20